New Zealand Travel Bubble Announcement

Mattg

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@Berlin and others in NZ, have you registered with DFAT?


It could help to give the government a better idea of just how many Australians are "stuck" here (and realise the impact of their policies) if everyone did that.

What really annoys me about the fact Australia is no longer accepting anyone from NZ (even outside of the Auckland, where there is no covid) is that there was no warning or opportunity to return to Australia at all. From the time the first community covid case was found in Auckland to the government announcing lockdown was less than 5 hours, and after that all flights to Australia stopped. At least when the New Zealand government paused travel from Australia, they had the decency to give their own citizens and residents another week to return (with a negative test).
 

Mwenenzi

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While most of NZ is level 2 and AKL level 3, AU federal & *State* govt's will not open the NZ to AU TT bubble. At AKL level 2 and the rest of NZ level 1 only a low chance AU will open. Not helped by Air Auckland only offering flights from that city.
In the mainland support for the Govt of Auckland & Northland (Jacidina, Grant, Chipper, etc) is decreasing fast, but closed borders still has wide public support. Well over 300 days since a CV19 commiunity case in the mainland (South Island) [international airports of CHC & ZQN]


28 May 2020 --> Coronavirus: No remaining cases of Covid-19 in South Island
 

Berlin

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@Berlin and others in NZ, have you registered with DFAT?
Thanks a lot for pointing this out, I had no idea that such a site existed. Have registered myself and my partner straight away, not that I have any hopes that it will make a difference to us personally. But as you say, if nothing else, it gives the government more accurate numbers which might help with future border decisions.

From my current perspective, it would probably be easiest if we get rid of Delta altogether here in Auckland and then hopefully the Aussies will open up the border again. I don't think that AU gives a damn about NZ's levels but rather looks at community transmission or not- at least that's how it sounds from their press releases and statements (plus none of my colleagues and friends in Australia understands the Kiwi alert level thing so I doubt that the AU government will).

If that's not going to happen, then I guess we'll have to wait until parts of Australia allow vaccinated travellers into the country again which will most likely take ages still- or will it? NSW and VIC at least sound surprisingly confident about 'opening up' soon- 'surprising' as from a NZ perspective.
 

Mattg

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From 1 November 2021, all non-New Zealand citizens arriving in NZ will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


There are limited exceptions which would not apply to most Australians:

RSE workers coming to NZ as part of the one-way QFT arrangement with Samoa, Tonga, and Vanuatu will also be exempt due to existing vaccination requirements, as will refugees. There will also be a process to seek exemptions from the Director General of Health on humanitarian grounds, or where people travelling with New Zealand citizens have not had the opportunity to be vaccinated within the timeframes.
 

henrus

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From 1 November 2021, all non-New Zealand citizens arriving in NZ will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Given airlines like Air NZ and Qantas are going to require vaccination anyway (likely more on the way), it'll be rather hard to get to NZ anyway.
 

VPS

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And an email from Air NZ this morning

Kia ora VPS,

We’ve all missed out on so much these past 18 months - celebrating weddings, meeting new babies, and saying big goodbyes. Opportunities, moments and milestones – big and small.

But now the clouds are parting, and we can see blue sky ahead.

At Air New Zealand, we're getting ready for the return of international travel, and we hope you are too. Our reasons for getting back up in the air might be different, but we can all agree there's something magical about dusting off a passport, feeling foreign currency in your pocket, and jetlag, glorious jetlag.

I'm looking forward to that screech of aircraft tyres as we land in New York for the first time. Seeing the sun catch the Pacific Ocean as we leave New Zealand waters for somewhere else. Hearing the words "have a great flight".

Our airline hasn't been sitting on our hands during the pandemic. Every part of Air New Zealand is preparing for the day when borders re-open.

From how we keep you comfortable, to the food you eat, we’ve been testing new ideas and products. We’ll go the extra mile to ensure every journey together is a safe and enjoyable one.

As the pathways to the world re-open, we've been looking at how we can keep you and New Zealand safe. That's why from 1 February next year, we'll be asking all international travellers aged 18 and over, arriving or departing Aotearoa, to be fully vaccinated before they board our aircraft.

It looks like proof of vaccination and pre-departure testing are going to be a part of flying for a while yet. Increasingly, the places Kiwis like to fly to will be closed to unvaccinated visitors, and we’re working on ways to streamline the travel process for you.

In the meantime, every action that we all take – be it getting vaccinated, tested or masking up – is a step towards opening back up to the world. We may not quite be there yet, but we’re well on our way.

Whether you're at home or abroad – I want to thank you. For everything you've done to keep our community safe and for your loyalty to Air New Zealand.

In the meantime, we're getting ready to take off as soon as the captain says.

Ngā mihi nui,
 
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Mattg

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And an email from Air NZ this morning

Kia ora VPS,

We’ve all missed out on so much these past 18 months - celebrating weddings, meeting new babies, and saying big goodbyes. Opportunities, moments and milestones – big and small.

But now the clouds are parting, and we can see blue sky ahead.

At Air New Zealand, we're getting ready for the return of international travel, and we hope you are too. Our reasons for getting back up in the air might be different, but we can all agree there's something magical about dusting off a passport, feeling foreign currency in your pocket, and jetlag, glorious jetlag.

I'm looking forward to that screech of aircraft tyres as we land in New York for the first time. Seeing the sun catch the Pacific Ocean as we leave New Zealand waters for somewhere else. Hearing the words "have a great flight".

Our airline hasn't been sitting on our hands during the pandemic. Every part of Air New Zealand is preparing for the day when borders re-open.

From how we keep you comfortable, to the food you eat, we’ve been testing new ideas and products. We’ll go the extra mile to ensure every journey together is a safe and enjoyable one.

As the pathways to the world re-open, we've been looking at how we can keep you and New Zealand safe. That's why from 1 February next year, we'll be asking all international travellers aged 18 and over, arriving or departing Aotearoa, to be fully vaccinated before they board our aircraft.

It looks like proof of vaccination and pre-departure testing are going to be a part of flying for a while yet. Increasingly, the places Kiwis like to fly to will be closed to unvaccinated visitors, and we’re working on ways to streamline the travel process for you.

In the meantime, every action that we all take – be it getting vaccinated, tested or masking up – is a step towards opening back up to the world. We may not quite be there yet, but we’re well on our way.

Whether you're at home or abroad – I want to thank you. For everything you've done to keep our community safe and for your loyalty to Air New Zealand.

In the meantime, we're getting ready to take off as soon as the captain says.

Ngā mihi nui,

It's quite an art using so many words to say so little ;)
 

Berlin

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Meanwhile, I've received this in my inbox yesterday- quite funny that they encourage us to get vaccinated here in NZ while still here.

I can only hope that this will really be happening in November as I don't see much chance for NZ to really get down to zero again in the meantime- I think/fear that this train has left the station when we went down a level here in Auckland. So, hopefully this will become reality (and there will be enough flights to get us back home too):

Good afternoon all

You may have seen the Prime Minister’s announcement today that the Australian border may reopen in November 2021 to vaccinated travellers. States and territories will begin this program at different times given their varying vaccination rates. The full announcement is available at https://www.pm.gov.au/media/next-steps-reopen-world.

At this stage, we do not have any details on the plan to reopen borders. As soon as we do, we will share with those on our register.

Everyone in New Zealand, including visitors, are able to be vaccinated in New Zealand. If you are not yet vaccinated, and wish to receive it while here, please go to

https://bookmyvaccine.covid19.health.nz/.

Regards

Australian High Commission Wellington
 

Mattg

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I got this as well. The fact that the word "may" was even underlined says it all - they have received zero information and really have no idea what's going on.
 

Mwenenzi

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From 1 November 2021, all non-New Zealand citizens arriving in NZ will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


There are limited exceptions which would not apply to most Australians:
Will be a problem for some, as people arriving with an an NZ Citizen (eligible family) may not have had jabs. Are still places in the world where getting a jab is a problem. And more so if not a citizen of that country. Not everyone is coming from a well vaccinated western country where jabs are easy to get.
 

henrus

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Will be a problem for some, as people arriving with an an NZ Citizen (eligible family) may not have had jabs.
The bigger problem will be getting to New Zealand.

Qantas, Air New Zealand, Jetstar will all require passengers to be vaccinated. Combined they make up the bulk of flights to/from NZ. If Emirates, Qatar and/or Singapore airlines take off and come onboard with that idea then it'll get even harder for an unvaccinated NZ citizen to even reach NZ.
 

HappyFlyerFamily

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The bigger problem will be getting to New Zealand.

Qantas, Air New Zealand, Jetstar will all require passengers to be vaccinated. Combined they make up the bulk of flights to/from NZ. If Emirates, Qatar and/or Singapore airlines take off and come onboard with that idea then it'll get even harder for an unvaccinated NZ citizen to even reach NZ.
Hopefully they regard unvaccinated children (under 12, at least, if not under 16) the same as vaccinated. Would the answer not be red flights/MIQ for unvaccinated NZ citizen returning to NZ? Or perhaps Emirate/Qatar/Singapore airlines are the "red" flights.
 

henrus

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Hopefully they regard unvaccinated children (under 12, at least, if not under 16) the same as vaccinated.
In the case of Air New Zealand, anyone under 18 is allowed to travel unvaccinated. This is also expanded to include actual medical reasons (religious reasons don't count). The Qantas group is yet to announce who will be exempt.

Would the answer not be red flights/MIQ for unvaccinated NZ citizen returning to NZ? Or perhaps Emirate/Qatar/Singapore airlines are the "red" flights.
As this is an airline policy it doesn't matter if the flight is green or red.

From 1 February all Air New Zealand international flights (including green services to the Cook Islands/possibly AU if they exist as green services) will require all passengers/crew to be vaccinated (unless exempt).

Given the Qantas group is also going to follow the same policy and currently all flights between Australia and New Zealand are operated by either Air NZ or the Qantas group, it'll basically mean that people flying across the tasman will need to be vaccinated, even though the entry into the country may not require it, the airline policy will.

At this stage none of the 5th freedom operators between AU/NZ are requiring vaccination as an airline policy so it might mean that if someone wants to fly from AU to NZ they'll be limited to specific airlines.
 

henrus

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Gosh, I am seriously hoping they will exist from Novemberish or otherwise I can really jump straight out the window :oops:
As much as it pains me to say it, I feel like it's very safe to say the bubble is dead. With NZ abandoning elimination and the virus slowly creeping south down the north island it's unlikely it'll return as a "safe travel country" by Australian standards (or at least all states other than NSW/VIC/ACT).

I think the only hope for November will be the ability to complete a 7 day home quarantine instead and this will likely be limited to NSW and VIC to begin with.
 

Berlin

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I think the only hope for November will be the ability to complete a 7 day home quarantine instead and this will likely be limited to NSW and VIC to begin with.
Yes sorry, that's what I meant. The "opening the borders" thing is probably my best bet now. I agree with you, here in NZ Delta is out (I personally don't understand what has ridden Jacinda when going to level 3 too early but that's a different story) and won't get back in.

Luckily, 7 day home or hotel (self-)quarantine in either Sydney or Melbourne suits me just well :D
 

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